Tuesday, February 12, 2008

movie night

Yesterday Steve and I had an opportunity to watch Amazing Grace. If you haven't seen this movie you should watch it. I thought it was very well done, very moving and altogether wonderful.

Even Steve liked it and he usually is not a big fan of the period piece movie. Vanity Fair, Pride and Prejudice, that sort of movie...I love them and could watch them again and again. I love the costumes, the settings, and usually they are so well acted. Amazing Grace was no exception and even more touching for the fact that it is based on a true story and that William Wilberforce was a real person who did accomplish a great thing, the abolition of slavery in England.

Definitely worth watching.

tuesday night knitting

It's snowing like a banshee here. So we decided to cancel Stitch Sisters. Funny thing is that I must have spent over an hour on the phone talking to everyone as we were all sad that we couldn't get together. One sister suggested that we need a "snow night" for when this happens. We may have to do just that.

One sister lives just over the hill. I decided to chance it and went to her house for a cup of tea and knitting. It was great to spend time with her. I brought some cookies I had made and we had a cup of tea to go with our knitting, it was great.

I've been looking for another cookie recipe to teach at my next baking class. I've successfully developed a scone recipe, have a great biscotti recipe and wanted to make a cookie as well. So I made two different kinds of rye cookies (one Russian, one Swedish). Neither one came out great although the Swedish cookies were better than the Russian ones. Mostly because the Russian ones tasted like toffee to me. If I'm eating a cookie I want a cookie not a candy.

I'm going to change both recipes further (working with fresh ground flour is always a bit difficult). The Russian cookies I will cut back on the butter and see if that helps. The Swedish cookies I'm going to make thicker (they were too thin and crisp) and add cardamom. I think they may wind up being the winner for the class but both cookies will go through at least one more round before I decide.

The hardest part is that it's really not healthy having all of these cookies around. Luckily the folks at the library, post office, yoga class, etc don't mind being my taste testers. This also gives me the opportunity to ask them what they do or don't like about the cookies.

Funny enough my friend tonight liked the Russian rye cookies better because she said they were sweeter and they were great to suck on (they were button-size) while drinking hot tea.

At the end of the evening I managed to make it down their hill and up mine to be safe and sound back at home. I'm thinking there must be lots of spoons under pillows tonight and seriously question whether or not there will be school.

Sunday, February 10, 2008


The weather has been very strange today.

First it's grey, overcast, snowing and the wind is so heavy the snow is blowing sideways.

Then the sun comes out.

Then it goes away.

And snows some more.

Now the wind is blowing so fiercely again that it is literally screaming its way through the windows.

And it's cold.

So glad we have a woodburning stove. Sitting curled up on the sofa with the dog, the cat and a blanket I am crocheting, occasionally looking up at the flames or drinking my tea. It's good stuff.

Saturday, February 09, 2008

needle card

Oh my goodness. I am spending waaaaay too much time on Ravelry. Thank goodness my paper and test for session three of my class is done and I have nothing to hand in right now.

I just discovered that I can enter all of the needles that I own, sizes, lengths, types, crochet hooks and PRINT IT OUT!!! I mean HOW COOL IS THAT??? This way I'll have a little card that will let me know all of the needles that I own. Of course since I inherited all of my grandmother's knitting needles (BTW Mom this was before you started knitting, do you want any?) that's going to be a cool thing to be able to keep track of. Her needles are mostly really small sizes but still to know where they came from is neat.

I do find that I am preferring circulars more and more but that's okay, I'll have a needle chart. Love it.

snow again

Just as I am getting to the part of the year where I am thoroughly sick and tired of the cold, I'm wishing mightily for spring and wondering why I live here it snows. And once again the scenery is covered in a delicate white drape of snow and everything looks pretty instead of muddy and wet and brown and miserable. Somehow when there's fresh snow on the ground it doesn't matter how cold it is it looks better. But spring had better hurry because I really am in need of some open-window therapy.

Friday, February 08, 2008


It's getting harder and harder to cook. Between picky kids, rotating numbers of people at the table and varying diets I have a fridge packed ab-so-lutely full of leftovers. I think it was Tracy Ullman who said, "My mother served leftovers for 20 years...the original meal was never found." I can see how that would happen.

love the sub

Today's yoga class was thaught by a substitute. She was very sweet and we had a nice relaxing class. She did a lot of small joint work, fingers, wrists, toes and ankles which I liked. We also did eyeball yoga. Yes folks, there is such a thing as eyeball yoga and it actually feels pretty good.

An extra benefit to the class today...she was a new teacher...she didn't have a good sense of timing or pacing...we got an extra half hour of practice. What's not to love about that?

Thursday, February 07, 2008

i did it myself

Helping a friend out her lovely daughters came to my house for the afternoon. Misses J and M were only too happy to traipse after D (who they think is the bees knees) while the youngest, Miss P, decided she wanted to help me make cookies. Here's how our conversation went:

Me: I thought we could make chocolate chip cookies today
P: I don't like chocolate chip cookies
Me: Really? Who doesn't like chocolate chips?
P: I don't!
Me: Okay. What kind of cookies do you like?
P: I like peanut butter cookies!
Me: Okay then! Peanut butter it is.
--worried voices from outside the kitchen -- you're still going to make chocolate chip right?--
Me: Yes

As we were happily baking away I asked Miss P about her prior baking experience

Me: Have you ever baked before?
P: Yes
Me: Do you like baking?
P: Yup
Me: How often do you get to bake?
P: I like to bake but I never get to because J does all the baking
Me: So what do you do if J does all the baking?
P: I don't know
Me: what about dishes, do you like to wash dishes?
P: yes a lot
Me: That's good because we're going to have a lot of dishes to wash
P: Oh I don't wash dishes anymore. I used to but not now. My favorite part is the eating part but I really like baking right now
Me: So you don't want to wash dishes?
P: *giggles* No!
Me: Are you sure you want to eat the cookies when we're done?
P: Yes!

We wound up making both peanut butter AND chocolate chip cookies and mysteriously many many taste testers came out of the woodwork when the cookies were done.

It was a lot of fun to bake with a little helper, it's been a long time since I've had that pleasure.

links i like friday

It seems I'm always finding new sites. And they're all so good. I know no one really pours through my blogreads list to see what's new so I've decided that every now and then I will post a list of all the new links I've found. Not sure how often I'll do this but at least this way if I find something neat you might like it too.

http://krisknits.blogspot.com/ - awesome site, she does the most amazing dishcloths. Very talented knitter, can't wait to see what she comes up with next.

http://www.rebeccablood.net/ - my Mom sent this one to me. I kinda like it, lots of interesting stuff here. Thanks Mom!

oh help

Thanks to Lime and Violet (and if you don't subscribe you really should...lots of good stuff there) I have just found out about the bust your stash promotion. *wimper*

Bad enough I went on a yarn diet. Even worse I gave away yarn. Then I participated in two Stitch Sister Stash Reduction Projects. And still I have too much stash (I'm embarrassed to admit how many boxes so I won't tell you). When I discovered two boxes I had forgotten about I hauled another mess o' yarn off to Stitch Sisters to see if anyone wants to start a new SSSR project. Luckily for me they did, Mrs. F loves brown and so I can pawn off share the brown yarn that I seriously overbought years ago and have moved I am not kidding here seven times!!!!! as we all make a blanket for her.

But Sonny & Shear are too kind. All I have to do is save ball bands. And the faster I knit the more yarn I use the more coupons I get the more I can buy. Hmmmm....wonder what the ratio works out to. But you better believe I'm saving my bands. Shouldn't you?

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

wfmw - bulkfoods

Haven't done one of these for a while as I've been busy studying. This should be a great way to find a lot of good online resources, don't forget to check it all out at Rocks In My Dryer, or better yet, play along.

My favorite online resource? Well truthfully I have several but I think one of my big favorites is bulkfoods.com. They have a wide selection of a lot of different things that we use and the shipping is only $4.95. Take a look, you'll be amazed at what you find there.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

vote fibertarian

Okay folks, I'm changing my party affiliation. Thanks to Franklin at The Panopticon it has come to my attention that Dolores is running. Her party platform is as follows:

1. Elizabeth Zimmermann's birthday will be declared a national holiday.
2. All fiber-related purchases will be fully tax-deductible.
3. Knitting will become a mandatory subject in American public schools.
4. Government subsidies for the establishment of independent yarn shops in high-need areas.

In all seriousness, what ever your affiliation please go vote today.

Monday, February 04, 2008


I'm still working on the secret shawl for *****. I'm going to be working on it for a while. Especially since I had to rip back two whole inches!!! I hate ripping back. I'm a go-with-the-flow knitter and if I make a mistake try to correct it on the fly. Unfortunately this was not correctable. Luckily for me one of my stitch sisters was around to help me reset all the stitches after I ripped. It's depressing how long it takes to create and how quickly to undo your stitches.

But the shawl is coming out lovely if I do say so myself. One minor modification to put in a little texture since I'm doing all one color instead of multiple colors as the pattern calls for. Now it's going to be round and round and round and round until we get to the lacy edge.


Yesterday D got to help bottle feed a four day old baby goat. Unfortunately her mama passed away from toxemia and her brother was too weak to survive. The fact that Nibbles has made it four days is a good sign. It was the sweetest and funniest experience to feed her. She couldn't decide between nursing from the bottle and jumping around. Plus every now and then her legs splayed out on the floor as she took a Bambi-like tumble. D was thrilled to be allowed to help and plans to go back next weekend and help out with feedings again.

After an hour of playing with Nibbles we went to visit a friend whose German Shephard had six male puppies. They are three months old and so adorable. A rough and tumble bunch of playful nipping puppies. So fast moving that it was almost impossible to get a picture. D plans to help walk them when they start to leash train next month.

Saturday, February 02, 2008

xtreme knitters rock the yarn

This link came to me from Israel via Denmark! How's that for travel? Fun and interesting, the pictures are great.